Mac Brow Set in 'Beguile' - £12.50
If there's one thing I often struggle with - it's my eyebrows. They're ridiculously light due to me being blonde, and this compared with the fact that I was once ridiculously pluck-happy with them when I was about 13 means that I don't have a great deal to work with. Damn you, tweezers! On a recent cosmetic splurge, I decided to give Mac's Brow Set a whirl. Now then, I'm not going to tell you fibs - it took a good fortnight or so for me to fall in love with this product - and it's one that you're either going to love or loathe. I'd read a handful of reviews previous to buying it, and the feedback is so mixed that it's impossible to come to a conclusion without trying it for yourself. So, obviously I had to try it! It would be criminal not to...
I've tried clear brow gels in the past - and although they work in the sense that they keep the hairs in place, they do nothing for my barely there little shoddy excuses of brows! I opted for the shade 'Beguile' - the mid-brown shade. A lot of people get put off by the slight shimmer that's in the product - it is quite obviously there, as you can see by my blended out swatch. However, don't worry your little noggins off - you won't step out of the bathroom with eyebrows to rival a disco ball - the product applies so thinly, that any shimmer is barely noticeable, even in bright sunlight - and the finish is both professional and natural.
The only thing I struggled with is application. This takes some practice - especially when you're still bleary eyed and half asleep in the morning like myself. Unlike clear gels, you can't just merrily comb this through your brows! The first few times I used this I had to grab a cotton bud to wipe off any blotches I'd accidently applied to the area underneath my eyebrow - you have to be quite gentle with it, especially if your eyebrows need plucking - as this will pick up the tiniest of hairs. It took a good week of persevering for me to begin to like this product due to the tricky application - I find the brush slightly too big but I've learnt to work with it now. I tend to just use the end of the bristle brush to apply the brow gel, and any excess on the tip i scrape back into the tube to avoid a heavy handed application. I find the best way is to apply bit by bit rather than in one swift movement.
I still use a brow powder to fill in the arch of my brow using my Sleek Brow Kit - and then go over the hairs using the Brow Set. I've been so impressed with how this product manages to keep my eyebrows in place all day. One problem with having lighter coloured brows is that towards the end of the day, product wears off and you tend to find your eyebrows don't look as defined as they once did. For me and my cruddy eyebrows, the Mac Brow Set solves that problem, as the hairs are actually defined and coated in product, rather than just the skin underneath them.
Top: Finished result - more defined eyebrows
Bottom: 1. Dull light / 2. Natural light / 3. With Flash - swatches of my natural brows filled in with Brow Set - before addition of eyebrow wax. Swatchin'ell!
Please excuse my unshapely eyebrows - I'm aware they are in need of a good plucking ;) I've recently tinted them and I've had to avoid shaping them at all for 72 hours prior.. eep! (If you want a run-through of how I did this let me know) The days of drawing my brows on are long gone - this product just gives them the definition they need. I usually apply a touch of powder or wax from my Sleek Brow kit to achieve a slightly darker look than you can see here in my swatches (I have a review of the product here - I've since bought the 'dark' version as it seems to work better for me). It's entirely up to you how dark you go with them - but the Brow Set provides the perfect finishing touch and adds so much definition that is impossible to achieve through brow powder alone. I've had a few comments on my eyebrows since using this - and I'm so glad I didn't just throw this back into my makeup drawer when it didn't work for me at first. Eyebrows are such a key part of makeup application - they define your face - it takes different products for different people to get it right, but I think I've finally found the last step in my brow routine that generally makes my whole face look more groomed and perfected.
Apologies about the long review - I don't think there's much on the bloggersphere about this product currently - so I felt the need to chatter a bit more than usual!
Have you ever tried Mac's Brow Set? What were your thoughts?